PCB not happy with less number of matches in new FTP

Karachi: Pakistan Cricket Board has expressed reservations on the new Future Tours Programme over lesser number of matches allotted to the national side against top teams, including India, at the ICC Chief Executives meeting in Dubai today.

Sources in the PCB said that Zakir Khan, who attended the chief executives meeting, conveyed Pakistan`s concerns over the number of matches it was being allotted in the new FTP that starts from 2012.

"There is plenty of concern that top teams like Australia, England and India are playing fewer matches against Pakistan compared to other teams in the ICC rankings," one source said.

He said that the PCB had conveyed its concern to the other members that it needed to get more matches from top teams even if they are to be played at neutral venues to keep cricket going in Pakistan.

"Already we are facing a crisis because of the refusal of foreign teams to tour Pakistan due to the security conditions. We have been forced to play our home series at neutral venues and now we can`t afford to get less matches against Australia, England, especially against India," the source said.

The source said that in the new FTP, the three top teams had avoided scheduling regular home and away series against Pakistan.

"India has also made it clear that its FTP commitments against Pakistan are subject to government clearance," the source said.

India has not played Pakistan in a bilateral series since 2007 when Pakistan toured India for a Test series.

Since the 2008 Mumbai terror attacks, India has refused to play Pakistan despite attempts by the PCB and International Cricket Council to organise bilateral limited over matches at neutral venues.

The source said that the top teams had however assured that if the security situation improved in Pakistan they would consider increasing the number of series even outside the FTP.